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Choosing the Right Leather Work Gloves

Comfort, dexterity, durability the flexibility, security, and cost are the key aspects to consider when choosing a leather glove to use in specific workplaces or as a general purpose work glove. A comparison of leather work glove options, material choices, pattern variations, styles, and application can help you select the most suitable glove.

Glove Leather Types and Quality

The kind and the quality of leather used are significant factors when choosing the right leather for gloves for use in the workplace. Gloves are manufactured primarily in goatskin, cowhide, pigskin and deerskin, each offering unique characteristics specific in the specific animal.

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Cowhide Leather is among the most durable and cost-effective leathers used to manufacture gloves because of its accessibility, comfort, and durability. Particularly, it is great in terms of dexterity, durability pliability, abrasion resistance, and resistance to punctures. Cowhide is also extremely effective in keeping hands warm however it’s not great for the breathability of the leather. Cowhide gets stiffer when it is wet, and then becomes rigid and losing its flexibility.

Pigskin leather is a soft and supple leather which is more porous making a glove that is well-fitting also resistant to humidity, however not the same as cowhide in terms of warmth. A high amount of lanolin keeps the leather soft, and it does not dry out and crack when it is repeatedly wet. Pigskin is an economical alternative to cowhide, offering more flexibility and breathability, and superior pliability. Pigskin leather is among the most durable and has the best abrasion resistance of cowhide, deerskin, and goatskin.

Goatskin leather is the most natural lanolin content, which creates a soft and flexible glove that keeps its pliability after getting wet. Goatskin offers the improved dexterity, pliability, and breathability of pigskin over cowhide however it does not provide the strength. The resistance to puncture and abrasion is about the same as cowhide. However, goatskin may not offer as much protection against cold as cowhide.

Deerskin leather is extremely soft and flexible, providing great dexterity and flexibility. Deerskin gloves will not become stiff after repeated wetting and shape to the hand with time. They also have the ability to easily lose their shape when worn rough. Deerskin gloves are excellent for comfortbut they compromise their durability, durability, and abrasion resistance. Deerskin glove breathability is limited similar to cowhide. Also, they offer less protection from cold temperatures, similar to the goatskin and pigskin gloves.

Types of leather are further divided by cuts or splits which offer various degrees of quality.

Full-Grain Leather is also known as top-grain leatheris the best raw materials, which includes the waterproof skin on the outside that gives a stronger, more durable glove with greater protection against puncture and abrasion.

Split leather is obtained by splitting the rougher interior side of the leather (drop divided) from the protective outer portion (grain) creating a soft and more flexible glove that has greater dexterity. Split leather can be divided into three different types, based on which portion of the animal hide is cut off:

  • The side split is created by splitting the hide in half along the backbone and is the strongest and even split due to its high fiber density.
  • Shoulder split leather is taken from the neck and shoulder area of the animal and gives abrasion resistance and is a cheaper grade of leather.
  • Belly split leather is cut from the underside or belly of the animal and is less consistent in texture and appearance but it is also the most affordable split leather.

Leather Work Glove Linings

The lining of the glove is a big aspect of hand comfort. There are the options ranging from none to synthetic and natural materials. The most popular leather glove options for lining are listed below:

  • 3M Thinsulate makes use of extremely tiny filaments of polyester, which provide an extremely efficient insulation linings with none of the weight made of the natural components. It is manufactured by 3M. It is extremely breathable and has an exceptional insulating ability in damp conditions.
  • Pile is synthetic wool that is very popular due to its low price along with its similarity to wool.
  • Thermal linings are made by creating a top layer, which is then overlaid by another layer of material creating a thermal insulation pocket in between.
  • Fleece is a soft, bulky cotton that has a thick pile. It is among the most popular glove Liners.
  • Foam lining consists of a layer of foam insulation between cotton fleeced and an interlocked layer of cotton.
  • Thermo-lined gloves can be described as thermal gloves that have waterproof liner.
  • Wool linings are resistant to odors and provide great warmth even when wet.

Leather Work Glove Patterns

The most popular construction for leather work glove designs is Clute. Gunn pattern, but the Clute pattern is a more economical alternative

gunn pattern is made using fully wrapped fingers and thumbs. The portion on your palms is distinct glove pattern which is sewn on the bottom of the middle fingers. This cut permits flexibility in the seams at the natural finger crease and the seamless back provides greater comfort. The seams on the fingers being removed from the working area helps the glove to last longer.

Clute Pattern refers to gloves with large, comfortable fitting and seams on every finger and across the back of the glove. The palm and bottom of the fingers are covered with one piece of material and no seams on the hand side of the glove.

Leather Work Glove Cuffs

Work gloves made of leather are available in a wide range of cuffs. Hemmed cuffs provide medium wrist protection; shirred and knit wrists keep debris from getting inside the glove. Safety and gauntlet cuffs offer maximum wrist and forearm protection:

  • Rolled hem or turned cuffs have a narrowly rolled hem and create a very finished and neat look.
  • Cuffs that are hemmed can use color-coded fabric to hem the cuff of the glove.
  • Knit Wrist cuffs provide a snug fit to prevent debris or liquids from entering the glove.
  • Shirred cuffs are made of elastic and wrap the glove around the wrist when worn, but not as tightly as the knit wrist.
  • Safety cuffs can provide a higher degree of wrist and arm protection with large 2-1/2″ cuffs. Safety cuffs are manufactured from a variety of materials and include rubberized, starched, plasticized, denim leather, canvas and cuffs.
  • Gauntlet cuffs are the largest version of the safety cuff and provide the highest level of arm and wrist protection by using large 4 1/2″ cuffs.

Leather Work Glove Thumb Types

Work gloves are produced using at least one of the thumb types:

  • Keystone thumb is one of the varieties of thumb which is stitched to fit the natural position of the thumb. The keystone thumb gives the most flexibility and ease of use.
  • The Wing thumb is made with the thumb placed in a diagonal direction across your palm to improve mobility and comfort. There is no any seams connecting the thumb to the palm area.
  • Straight thumbs are made using the thumb extending vertically straight from the wrist. It is ideal for gripping.

Leather Work Glove Styles

Leather work gloves can be divided into three main style groups:

Drivers’ gloves with leather also known as drivers, are some of the most rugged and comfortable gloves designed for work that offer elasticity and abrasion, puncture, moisture, in addition to resistance against heat. Leather drivers work well in numerous applications, including equipment operation including farm, construction, tractor-trailers and forklifts. Leather drivers are also ideal for general purpose workplaces which require more dexterity and flexibility, such as material handling general industrial work manufacturing, packaging, stamping and assembling lumber chainsaw operation, automotive, mining, furniture industry, pipe fitting assembly and many other medium to heavy duty industrial applications.

Leather palm gloves are one of the most popular and widely used work gloves due to their price, quantity and capability to deal with a wide variety of general industrial work tasks, like automotive, agricultural, gardening, construction, landscaping, parks and recreation, large materials handling, oil rigging refinery work, and other heavy industrial environments.

Welding gloves also known as welders, are a extremely heavy-duty, high-temperature resistant leather work glove that provides hand protection from flames, splashes of metal, UV radiation and sparks to be used in welding, molten metal and foundries.

Choosing the right leather work glove that is suitable for you or your employees is merely a an issue of knowing your options and the advantages. Leather gloves are durable and provide with dexterity and flexibility. They also provide security and comfort with a variety of materials and prices to accommodate virtually every industrial job environment.